Someone’s investing in Africa

This blog has talked about Afro-Asian relations before. The Washington Post had an interesting story on China investing in a Nigerian offshore oil reserve. Why is it that the Chinese are the only one to at least feign a respect for the future of the African continent?

I am not naive enough to believe that any move of international policy is a wholly innocent one. With that said, I am happy to see foreign investment in African nations that is NOT some sort of conditional debt relief. Deals such as the CNOOC deal show that there is value in Nigerian industry, a fact well known to people in that region, and one that should be increasingly more obvious to the rest of the planet in the near future. Maybe the reason is simple. Maybe the Chinese realize that the way to overtake White, Western world dominance is to unite all non-White peoples socially, intellectually, and economically (which is a great idea, I think we should do that here. I’ll get to that on a later post). This sort of “populist” approach to growth is a healthy and organic one, which I would like to see expand. I would like to see unions between all of Asia and Africa and South America. Why can’t we have a trans-national oil deal between Venezuela, Nigeria, and China? That may scare the daylights out of the Americans, but alliances such as these are essential for the world to advance to one that is fair to all of its inhabitants.

What is important about these alliances, and what makes them sustainable in my opinion, is that they would be peaceful. Problems with war-time alliances is that they are short-lived. If there is peace, why should I talk to you? is the attitude that persists. Then, you get countries making unilateral decisions to invade non-confrontational states like Iraq.

Like it or not, money is an important part of life. It is not the defining characteristic, but it is here and has a purpose. How about we unite companies on peaceful economic levels and instead of attacking countries to protect cash cows, like the U.S. did in Iraq. Perhaps this Chinese-Nigerian pact can be the blueprint for other deals that can create peaceful alliance among countries with shared financial interests.

The most important, and oft-overlooked piece of such a deal is what is done by the players to help their neighboring countries. China needs to share wealth with Vietnam, Taiwan (who they hate), Thai Land, and others in the region. Nigeria should do the same with its neighbors (e.g. Cameroon, Ghana, Ivory Coast, etc.). This notion of “Regional Wealth” can prove to be a powerful one that will build both pride and economic vitality in corners of the world that may have never known either.


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About Garlin Gilchrist II

I am the City of Detroit's first ever Deputy Technology Director for Civic Community Engagement. My job is to open up the city's public data and information for the consumption and benefit of all Detroiters. I currently live in Detroit, my hometown, with my beautiful wife Ellen and our twins Garlin III and Emily Grace. I'm from Detroit. I created Detroit Diaspora, and was formerly the National Campaign Director at I also co-hosted The #WinReport on "The Good Fight," a an award winning, nationally syndicated radio show that was one of Apple's Best of 2013. After graduating with degrees in Computer Engineering and Computer Science from the University of Michigan, I became a Software Engineer at Microsoft. By day, I helped build SharePoint into the fastest growth product in the company's history. On my personal time, I sought out opportunities to connect my technical skills with community building efforts across the country. This led to my co-founding The SuperSpade: Black Thought at the Highest Level, a leading Black political blog. I served as Social Media Manager for the 2008 Obama campaign in Washington, and then became Director of New Media at the Center for Community Change. I spent two years creating and implementing a strategy for the Center to take it's 40 years of community organizing experience into the digital age. I speak before diverse audiences on effective & responsive government, empowerment in revolutionary new organizing spaces, increasing civic engagement & participation through emerging technologies and protecting civil rights in the age of the Internet. Full bio here.

One response to “Someone’s investing in Africa”

  1. Y. Pearson says :

    Great post Garlin. I took an opportunity to re-read your November 20th post, The Continent That Matters, wherein the same topic, as you mentioned was disussed. Both posts were not only very well written, but also very informative.
    I wish you continued success with

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